West Ham man labels Liverpool player the best that he has faced

West Ham man labels Liverpool player the best that he has faced

West Ham United forward Michail Antonio has made it clear that Virgil van Dijk is the best defender that he has faced.

The 31-year-old said that the Liverpool man is a complete defender. Antonio further added that he tries to avoid Van Dijk out on the football pitch.

As quoted by HITC, Antonio told the BBC's Footballer’s Football podcast the following: “The best defender I’ve ever played against is Virgil van Dijk.

“He’s quick, he’s strong, he’s good on the ball. And he’s good looking! The man’s got it all. I don’t know what I can that would be negative about the man. On the football field, he’s basically perfect.

“When I play against him, I don’t play against him. I avoid him and go to his partner and try and have an easier ride.

“I fancy my chances against anyone. I’d never say anyone is stronger than me. So if I ever came up against him, I’d give him a fair go. I always believe in myself.

“But, if I didn’t have to, I’m just not going to do it. I’m going to avoid him and go to the outside side.

“I’m not going to play on him, I’m going to play on his buddy!”

Virgil van Dijk

ANFIELD WATCH VERDICT

Antonio's comments highlight that Van Dijk is a top defender. But, we already knew that.

Van Dijk was named the runner-up for the 2019 Ballon d'Or. As everyone that follows football knows, only the best players in the world are in contention for the aforementioned award.

It was a shame that the 30-year-old missed the majority (45 games) of last season due to a serious knee injury. But, Van Dijk has been fit for the early stages of the 2021-22 campaign and performed well.

The centre-back has been averaging a WhoScored player rating of 7.15 in the Premier League. Hopefully Van Dijk can stay fit  for the remainder of the season and continue his solid form.

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Lachlan Ballingall
Freelance sports journalist and Red from Melbourne. Currently an editor at Anfield Watch.
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Freelance sports journalist and Red from Melbourne. Currently an editor at Anfield Watch.
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